Thursday, July 3, 2008


            I am a cart wrangler.  That guy who you see in the parking lot pushing a line of shopping carts?  Me.  Yeah, the one you never really try to notice as a human being.  It’s because I’m not a human being.  I’m practically a robot.  An animatronic, biological life form repeating the same actions day in and day out.  I’ve walked the same path thousands of times and worn out six pairs of shoes on this job.  Monotony is one word for it.  A term I tend to latch onto is “mobile prison.”  It’s like being in jail except you’re required to be on your feet all day, criss-crossing the same section of pavement over and over.  And like all prisoners, I have a uniform.  Comfortable pants, comfortable shoes, comfortable shirt and what I like to call the “queervest.”  That ultra-bright, yellow reflection stripe combo.  It says, “Watch our for me.  Don’t hit me with your car” while I’m secretly saying “Please hit me with your car.”

     You’re making a delightful, Sunday morning trip to “Fun Factory” to buy a kiddie pool or some grout for said pool or nurturing your craving for that specially prepared “Fun Nuts Trail Mix” and I’m in the parking lot wishing for death.  Knowing that it will never take me until I’ve logged in another three thousand miles in my seventh pair of shoes.

    God, I need a smoke.



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